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Thread: Laserdisc - The Only Format You Need

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    Mega-Dorky Nerd God WCPO Agent nissling's Avatar
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    Default Laserdisc - The Only Format You Need

    Laserdisc is known as an obsolete videoformat, however, that's totally wrong. It's not obsolete, it was just before its time (really, the first LD was released 15th December 1978). The technology itself is simply far superior then what many people think. With 425 lines in NTSC and 440 lines in PAL and it's support to Dolby Digital and DTS 5.1-sound, there's nothing to complain about.

    This is where all these things about Widescreen edition, closed captions, Director's cut, collector's edition, supplemental materieal, commentary during film, Surround Sound and chapter index started. You couldn't get that on Vhs, Beta, Video 2000 or CED (although, the first Widescreen Edition ever was Amarcord on CED).

    What makes Laserdisc so awesome aren't just the awesome looking editions, it's the discs. A 12" double sided CD (or something like that :P ), you won't get that anywhere else then on Laserdisc. Since the discs are so big, the package has to be big too. It's a perfect reason to make a big box to hold some big discs, that's why some companies made awesome looking editions that makes the most expensive Collector's Edition on Dvd or Blu-Ray look like a cheap Bootleg from a basement in Thailand. Take a look at the Godfather Trilogy edition, for example. You simply won't find that on Dvd or Blu-Ray.

    So, what about you? Does anybode else here own a Laserdisc-player? I remember seeing a video by mn12bird on Youtube where he showed a LD-player that he'd recently bought.

    I haven't got Laserdisc for such a long time, about a half year or so but I have about 30 movies (four collector's edition) and a nice player from Pioneer. It's hard not to like Pioneer.
    Last edited by nissling; 08-22-2010 at 07:33 AM.

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    Angry Liberal Arts Major Hero of Algol Iron Lizard's Avatar
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    All I know is that it does not support 5.1 They are actually analog. Despite this fact they are awesome for being so incredibly ridiculous for being so impractical.

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    Mega-Dorky Nerd God WCPO Agent nissling's Avatar
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    You can actually get out 5.1 sound or even 6.1 if you're lucky to find one of the seven titles that has 6.1-sound. Dolby Digital is on the second Analog-track, so you connect the AC3-output to either a AC3-RF Demolator or a Reciever that can convert analog AC3 to digital. Then you'll get Dolby Digital 5.1. The DTS is on the Digital-track, so all you got to do is connect the LD-player to your reciver with the optical output right from your LD-player. Everything on Laserdisc is analog with exceptions of the sound which you can make digital (usually it's LPCM, identical to CD-audio).

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    Whuff! Outrunner Jax184's Avatar
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    Laserdisc video is entirely analog, though later ones supported digital sound.

    I began dabbling in them a couple years ago as a source of rare videos in better-than-vhs quality. Lots of oddities were only released on VHS and Laserdisc, and there hasn't been enough of a demand to have them redone on DVD or blu-ray. Stuff like The Wizard of Speed and Time, or The Mind's Eye. Since VHS is generally horrible, that makes the laserdisc the best option.

    Now I've got a pretty decent collection, which includes things like The Matrix. I just added a bunch of episodes of Cowboy Bebop straight from Japan.

    To play them all I use the utterly stunning Pioneer DVL-700. It's a close relative of the Pioneer Elites (Uses the same 3D predictive comb filter and gamma turning mechanism) but was about $2500 cheaper. It was also the first combo laserdisc/DVD player, and one of the first DVD players full stop. I remember reading reviews of the unit using bunches of calibration DVDs because there were no movies available in north america on the format yet.

    I ended up with most of my movies and the player by buying a friend's collection for $100, then selling half the movies and my old players to make the money back. Can't argue with that.

    I've uploaded some stuff captured from laserdisc to my youtube account. People in their early 20s who grew up here in Canada will no doubt recognize stuff like http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ScvIbcNV38k and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XMBnD...eature=related

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    WCPO Agent JRedmond3's Avatar
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    Don't you have to flip the discs? I've been interested in Laserdiscs for a while but never got around to getting a player.

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    Real Gamers Wear Monocles Master of Shinobi mick_aka's Avatar
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    All the later laserdisc players have both sides play meaning the discs do not have to be removed and flipped.

    Here's a vid of my Pioneer unit running thought my 42" HD plasma, ignore the flicker as that was my phone's camera not the screen...



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    Whuff! Outrunner Jax184's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mick_aka View Post
    All the later laserdisc players have both sides play meaning the discs do not have to be removed and flipped.
    Not all. I've had surprisingly new ones that were single sided. Why do you think people talked about things like "Gamma turn" or "Epsilon turn" mechanisms?
    Last edited by Jax184; 08-22-2010 at 08:19 AM.

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    Mega-Dorky Nerd God WCPO Agent nissling's Avatar
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    The Flipping isn't any problem at all for me. In fact, I've heard about alot of problems when it comes to the players that read both of the sides. They read the first side fine, but the second side sort of hacks. However, if you're lazy and don't want to flip any sides at all, get yourself a Pioneer LD-W1 that can hold two LD's at the time and read all four sides.

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    Nameless One Lopson's Avatar
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    The packaging of these things are awesome, but with all of these new Blu-Ray remasters, in which both the sound (which usually comes in lossless compression) and the video have excellent quality, I just don't see a reason to buy them anymore. Well, there is one... Some of these Laserdiscs releases haven't had scenes edited out, like it happened to its DVD counterparts. The original Dracula movie with Bella Lugosi is an example of this, IIRC.

    Just a quick question: do these Laserdisc players output Component video?

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    Mega-Dorky Nerd God WCPO Agent nissling's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lopson View Post
    Just a quick question: do these Laserdisc players output Component video?
    Well, the Video itself is composite but most of the time, it is a better compression then what you've seen with composite. However, there are players with S-video output, usually they don't make that much diffrence but if you have bought a HLD-X0 (for about $2500) the standard Laserdiscs will look pretty much like a Dvd even on a 50" HDTV.

    The main thing however is that your player atleast has composite and stereo-output. It's also a very important that your player can play NTSC-Laserdiscs. The PAL-library of movies is barely 5 % as big as the NTSC-library, many of them are Pan&Scan-editions from Germany that only contains bad dubs. Sure, the picture quality is superior on PAL-Laserdiscs but not by a whole lot and Laserdisc isn't that format you're using to get good picture.

    Personally, I buy movies on Laserdisc, Blu-Ray and HD-Dvd. Blu-Ray has the picture and audio quality, but Laserdisc has the movies. Seriously, there are WAY more movies available on Laserdisc then what you can imagine. Laserdisc was on the market for 23 years so it's not too strange though.
    Last edited by nissling; 08-22-2010 at 10:43 AM.

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    YM3438 Master! ESWAT Veteran evildragon's Avatar
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    I have a whole rack of LaserDiscs..

    Stereo digital discs came out sometime in the 80's and nearly all of them had that kinda track (except DTS, which took that track)..

    And those stereo PCM tracks sound WAY better than DVD audio, because it's uncompressed and sounds REALLY awesome.. Try watching Blair Witch Project with headphones plugged right into the player.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tsFm3BNZYe4

    Thats mine, and I have a LOT of discs, more than I have DVD's and VHS!!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jax184 View Post
    I've uploaded some stuff captured from laserdisc to my youtube account. People in their early 20s who grew up here in Canada will no doubt recognize stuff like http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ScvIbcNV38k and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XMBnD...eature=related
    Holy hell that took me back!
    S A V E R U S T Y

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    I have a couple of LD players. One CLD-D703 that I modded to add an AC-3 output and a CLD-D704 (that didn't need the mod). Both are aging enough now where they act up sometimes with flipping or stopping (it stops but doesn't brake the disc enough so it just keeps spinning for a couple of minutes before it will open). My 703 refuses to auto-flip my Pulp Fiction disc 1 because it just doesn't see side 2. I have them set up with the video output going to a receiver w/ an Anchor Bay deinterlacer / scaler so they actually look pretty good. Still not as clean as DVD but very good nonetheless.

    I keep these around because there are some movies I prefer to watch in analog (old 80s stuff from my childhood) or are only on LD but IMO, now that Blu-Ray is out, I think their time has passed.

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    Rogue Master of Shinobi Pulstar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 0x15e View Post
    IMO, now that Blu-Ray is out, I think their time has passed.
    That's pretty much the crux of it. I'd even argue that downloadable movies will eventually take over. Let's hope they're going to be DRM-lite!

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    VHS won because of porn.
    Internet distribution will win because of porn.
    The Terran Galactic Empire will win because of porn.

    You've been warned, alien scum!

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